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Looks like the Rays are finally getting a new stadium


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Crazy..........having lived in that area they have to realize their fanbase is in Tampa not St Pete and study after study specifically on that franchise shows they draw significantly higher on weekends not weekdays because of the drive.  The most desirable demographic is simply not willing to drive more than 30m on a weeknight, very different concept than the Braves who looked at those studies and decided to build closer to their fan base. 

It will no doubt draw as a novelty but long term I question whether it puts more weekday fans in the seats which is where their real opportunity exists.  It truly is an awful stadium experience but living 30-40 minutes south of the stadium (like 25% of their base) you would have no clue the Rays  even exist, there is far more support for the Lightning than the Rays.

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What we know so far about the renovated stadium is this: the stadium is expected to have a maximum capacity of 30,000 people, will have a fixed dome roof, and will feature artificial turf. It will be built in downtown St. Petersburg as part of the redevelopment of the city's Historic Gas Plant District.

OK aren't these are the same issues that people claim is reason for Tampa's troubles in their home park currently? 

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Are they expecting to build a train from central Tampa to St. Pete or something? 

I mean, yes, the Trop was a horrendous stadium to watch games, but the main driver for their low attendance is the location being too far from Tampa.  Building a new stadium a third of a mile away from the Trop isn't really going to solve this.  🤷‍♂️

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Having recently been down there and driven around the Tampa/St. Pete area, my son is considering University of Tampa, I am surprised they want to build it on the St. Pete side. The area around downtown Tampa seems much better suited for a stadium and the community that forms around it. The area around U Tampa is really nice. The didn't find the St. Pete side to be as exciting. 

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On 9/19/2023 at 3:10 PM, Aglets said:

So they are going to build another domed stadium in St. Pete just like the Trop and hope that people choose to come there instead because...........why exactly?

They have no choice but to have a dome given the heat down there.  But they can build a domed stadium that is more appealing than the Trop inside.  Not sure if the dome will be retractable, but maybe.
 

St. Pete is a really nice city and the location will be nice from the standpoint of having things to do before and after the game.  But it certainly won’t solve the problem that the people in Tampa and its suburbs won’t want to fight the traffic to get there on weeknights.  

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2 minutes ago, Frobby said:

They have no choice but to have a dome given the heat down there.  St. Pete is a really nice city and the location will be nice from the standpoint of having things to do before and after the game.  But it certainly won’t solve the problem that the people in Tampa and its suburbs won’t want to fight the traffic to get there on weeknights.  

Yeah I don't care about the dome so much.........my incredulity is more from the standpoint of:

When the common consensus seems to be that no one comes to see the Rays at the Trop because of traffic concerns and its poor location relative to where people actually are.............. why are they spending $1.2B to put a new stadium in that same location?

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26 minutes ago, Aglets said:

Yeah I don't care about the dome so much.........my incredulity is more from the standpoint of:

When the common consensus seems to be that no one comes to see the Rays at the Trop because of traffic concerns and its poor location relative to where people actually are.............. why are they spending $1.2B to put a new stadium in that same location?

I don’t know all the ins and outs, but I have the impression that they simply haven’t been able to find a suitable site and economic package on the Tampa side of the bay.  

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The stadium announcement was made despite the following:  

-They are planning to build in the same difficult to access location

-They don’t have financing yet although they say ownership's $700m contribution is not an issue?? And JA is bitching about payroll..........

-There have not been any votes by the two government bodies that make the final decisions.

-Ownership is quoted as saying "they will draw more fans because the population of St Petersburg is growing.  St Petersburg is not growing much (3,400 in 5 years-that's right 700 people a year!!) and Pinellas County has had a population drop over the last 5 years.

-The development around the park will start when the park is completed and take 20 years.    

-in Tampa 2/3 or more of the 3.2 million people in the Tampa Bay metro area live an hour from Tropicana Field. By building in St Petersburg they are limiting a 30 minute radius to about 600k people.  MLB studies show draw is significantly impacted by more than a 30m drive, I believe Rays disparity between weekend and weekday games is the most pronounced in MLB.

Note:  If they were to build in the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa the commute would be juxtaposed in that to 2/3 of the population of the area that live within 30 minutes-unfortunately politics intervened. 

The problem remains where the stadium is to be built.  

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2 hours ago, Frobby said:

They have no choice but to have a dome given the heat down there.  But they can build a domed stadium that is more appealing than the Trop inside.  Not sure if the dome will be retractable, but maybe.
 

St. Pete is a really nice city and the location will be nice from the standpoint of having things to do before and after the game.  But it certainly won’t solve the problem that the people in Tampa and its suburbs won’t want to fight the traffic to get there on weeknights.  

August/September is the rainy season in Tampa so you get "pop up" thunderstorms most days so the stadium needs to be covered.  Not just for the game logistics, as a fan I can remember getting soaked on the long walk to the stadium then sitting in wet clothes in an air conditioned stadium, never again.  

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